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Milan Lucic
MLucic.jpg
Born June 7, 1988 (1988-06-07) (age 30)
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight 235 lb (107 kg; 16 st 11 lb)
Position Left Wing
Shoots Left
NHL team
Former teams
Los Angeles Kings
Boston Bruins
National team Flag of Canada.svg Canada
NHL Draft 50th overall, 2006
Boston Bruins
Playing career 2007–present

Milan Lucic (born on June 7, 1988) is a Canadian professional ice hockey left winger currently playing for the Los Angeles Kings of the National Hockey League (NHL).

Milan played major junior with the Vancouver Giants in the Western Hockey League (WHL) for three seasons and captured a Memorial Cup, while being named tournament MVP in 2007.

He was selected 50th overall in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft and made the Bruins' roster in 2007-08 when he was 19 years old.

Three years later, he won a Stanley Cup with the Bruins. Internationally, he captained the Canadian national junior team at the 2007 Super Series. Lucic plays physically in the style of a power forward.

Playing CareerEdit

Milan played minor hockey in Vancouver, but nearly quit the sport after being passed up in the 2003 WHL Bantam Draft.

He was invited to play for the Coquitlam Express of the Junior A British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL), but was further demoralized when he initially failed to make the team out of rookie camp.

Instead, Milan agreed to play for the Junior B Delta Ice Hawks, but he later played his way onto the Express after five games.

Vancouver Giants (2004-2007)Edit

Milan began his junior career with the Coquitlam Express of the BCHL in 2004–05. In the same season, he made his major junior debut with the Vancouver Giants, his hometown WHL team, playing in one regular season game and two playoff games.

Milan joined the Giants full-time in 2005–06, scoring 19 points in 62 games. He added seven points in 18 playoff games to help the Giants to a WHL title and an appearance in the 2006 Memorial Cup.

In the off-season, Milan was selected 50th overall by the Boston Bruins in the second round of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. Bruins management had considered taking him earlier in the second round with the 37th overall pick, but chose defenceman Yuri Alexandrov instead.

The Bruins' director of scouting Scott Bradley admitted he did not expect Lucic to still be available with the 50th pick, adding "We were fortunate to get him."

The following season, in 2006–07, Milan emerged as one of the Giants' leaders, finishing first in team scoring with 68 points in 70 games.

He added 19 points in 22 post-season games, as the Giants lost the WHL Finals to the Medicine Hat Tigers in seven games.

Despite losing the WHL title, Vancouver appeared in the 2007 Memorial Cup as tournament hosts.

Milan and the Giants met Medicine Hat once more in the tournament final, capturing the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) title by a 3–1 score.

He assisted on Michal Řepík's tournament-winning goal with five minutes to play in regulation.

He finished the tournament tied for the lead in scoring with Řepík (with more goals, Řepík was awarded the Ed Chynoweth Trophy as leading scorer) and earned the Stafford Smythe Memorial Trophy as tournament MVP.

Nearly four years after his last junior game, Milan was honoured by the Giants prior to a game against the Chilliwack Bruins on February 25, 2011.

Dubbed "Milan Lucic Night", Milan was added to the club's Ring of Honour, showcasing the top Giants alumni of all-time. The first 500 game-attendees were also given free Lucic bobblehead dolls.

As part of the team's 10-year anniversary, he was also voted by fans as the team's best player of all-time.

Boston Bruins (2007-2015)Edit

In the 2007 off-season, Milan signed an entry-level contract with the Bruins on August 2, 2007.

He had been chosen as the Giants' next team captain, but made the Bruins' 2007–08 opening roster out of training camp.

He played in his first NHL game on October 5, 2007, a 4–1 loss to the Dallas Stars, in which he fought opposing forward Brad Winchester.

Milan's first goal came a week later on October 12th against Jonathan Bernier, a game winner in an 8–6 win against the Los Angeles Kings.

By also fighting Kings forward Raitis Ivanans and notching an assist, he recorded a Gordie Howe hat trick (an unofficial statistic constituting a goal, an assist and a fight in one game).

Unsure of whether the Bruins would keep him or return him to junior, Milan stayed in a downtown hotel in Boston to start the season.

However, he made enough of an impression during his first set of games with the Bruins, showing grit and consistent willingness to fight (he recorded 13 fighting majors in his rookie season) that they decided to keep him in the lineup.

Bruins management informed the Giants prior to Lucic's 10th game, accounting for the NHL's nine-game maximum for junior-eligible players to stay with their NHL club without initiating their contract.

Milan was chosen to participate in the 2008 NHL YoungStars Game and finished his rookie campaign with eight goals and 27 points.

Towards the end of the season, Milan was voted by Bruins fans for the team's Seventh Player Award for exceeding expectations.

Matched up against the first-seeded Montreal Canadiens in the opening round, Milan scored his first NHL playoff goal in game three on April 13, 2008. He finished his first NHL post-season with two goals as the Bruins were eliminated by the Canadiens in seven games.

Early into the 2008–09 season, Lucic recorded his first NHL hat trick and added an assist in a 5–4 win against the Atlanta Thrashers on October 25, 2008.

Later that week, Milan made a much-publicized return to his hometown in a game against the Vancouver Canucks, which featured a picture of him as a baby on the back page of Vancouver's The Province newspaper.

Earlier in the year, Milan's 2007 Memorial Cup ring had been stolen from his home in East Vancouver on July 10, 2008.

In a private ceremony before the game against the Canucks, he was presented a replacement ring by Vancouver Giants ownership.

Milan was chosen to his second YoungStars Game in January of 2009, but he did not compete for the sophomores in Montreal due to an undisclosed upper-body injury.

Near the end of the season, on April 4, 2009, Milan was awarded the Bruins' Eddie Shore Award for hustle and determination. He finished his second NHL season improving to 17 goals and 42 points in 72 games, while playing predominantly on a line with the Bruins' top centre, Marc Savard.

Entering the 2009 playoffs with the Bruins as the first seed in the Eastern Conference, Milan received a one-game suspension after delivering a cross-check to the head of Montreal Canadiens forward Maxim Lapierre in game two of the first round.

While the Bruins argued that Milan used predominantly his glove, rather than his stick, the league held its decision.

After serving his suspension, Milan and the Bruins went on to eliminate the Canadiens, advancing to the second round against the Carolina Hurricanes, who the Bruins lost to in seven games. He added nine points in 10 games in the playoffs.

With the 2009–10 season marking the final year of his original entry-level contract, it was announced on October 6, 2009 that Milan had been signed to a three-year, US$12.25 million contract extension with the Bruins, to go through to 2012–13.

The deal is structured at US$4 million for the first two seasons and US$4.25 million in the third, a raise from his US$685,000 2009–10 base salary.

Ten days later, on October 16, Milan suffered a broken finger requiring surgery in a game against the Dallas Stars while hitting defenceman Stephane Robidas.

Milan returned to the Bruins lineup on November 19, but was injured again four games later, suffering a sprained ankle in a game against the Minnesota Wild on November 25.

His left leg had buckled from underneath him while reaching behind him to receive a pass from teammate Dennis Wideman.

Missing an additional 18 games, Milan was limited to 50 contests in his third NHL season. His play was perceived by head coach Claude Julien to have suffered following the two injuries. He recorded nine goals and 20 points to finish the regular season.

Milan added nine points in 13 playoff games as the Bruins were eliminated in the second round by the Philadelphia Flyers.

They became the third team in NHL history to lose a playoff series after having led three games to none.

All five goals Milan scored in the playoffs were recorded in the second round, including two in the deciding seventh game, which the Bruins lost 4–3.

In the second month of the 2010–11 season, Milan recorded a natural hat trick on November 18, 2010, during a 4–0 win over the Florida Panthers.

Later in the campaign, he was fined $3,500 by the league for his actions during a game against the Atlanta Thrashers on December 23, 2010.

After Milan was hit by opposing defenceman Freddy Meyer, teammate Andrew Ference engaged him in a fight. In the ensuing scrum, Milan punched Meyer as the two were being restrained by referees, resulting in a match penalty.

Three days following the game, Milan received a $2,500 fine for his punch and an additional $1,000 for an obscene gesture he had made to players on the Thrashers' bench immediately afterwards.

In January of 2011, he missed three games with a shoulder injury.

Milan completed the season with a career-high 30 goals, 32 assists and 62 points in 79 games. He led the Bruins in goal-scoring while tying for the points lead with centre David Krejci.

Entering the 2011 playoffs as the third seed in the East, the Bruins eliminated the Montreal Canadiens, Philadelphia Flyers and Tampa Bay Lightning in the first three rounds, en route to the Stanley Cup Finals against the Vancouver Canucks.

Although Lucic scored below his regular season pace during the post-season with 12 points (5 goals and 7 assists) in 25 games, he helped the Bruins to their first Stanley Cup since 1972, as the team defeated the Canucks in Game 7 of the Finals.

It was later reported that Milan was playing through a couple of injuries during the playoffs.

During the Eastern Conference Finals, Milan suffered a broken toe after blocking a shot from teammate Tyler Seguin during practice.

He also struggled with a sinus infection, which was part of a larger problem in his right nostril that traced back to the end of the 2009–10 season and caused improper breathing. Milan underwent surgery in the off-season to repair the sinus.

In August of 2011, Lucic had his customary day in possession of the Stanley Cup, which he spent in Vancouver.

While it is traditional for players to host public celebrations with the trophy in their hometowns, Lucic chose to keep the day private, explaining that "I grew up a Canucks fan. I know how it is." Following the Canucks' defeat in the Finals, fans had staged an hours-long riot in Downtown Vancouver.

More personally, posters of Milan at a local cultural community centre were defaced. Also, an appearance by him at a Greek festival in Vancouver sparked a public brawl. The Vancouver Sun reported that Lucic did not throw any punches.

While Milan's day with the Cup was private, many of his functions were held in public venues which were reportedly well received by passers-by.

Milan brought the trophy to his hometown church, St. Archangel Michael Serbian Orthodox Church in Burnaby, for a gathering of approximately 350 people and on a harbour cruise with friends and family.

Milan finished the day atop Grouse Mountain, the same place where he and his Vancouver Giants teammates took the Memorial Cup after their CHL victory in 2007.

Months later in February of 2012, the church Milan brought the trophy to was vandalized.

A month-and-a-half into the 2011–12 season, he received considerable attention for a hit against opposing goaltender Ryan Miller during a game against the Buffalo Sabres.

Miller had come out of his net to play a puck that Milan last touched midway between the center line and the Sabres' blue line.

As Miller shot the puck towards the end-boards, Milan collided with him heavily, knocking him to the ice.

Miller was diagnosed with a concussion and was sidelined for several games. He also heavily criticized Milan for his actions and called him a "gutless piece of shit" in post-game comments.

The day after the hit, the league held a hearing with Milan and later announced that he would not be suspended for the play, citing that the minor penalty for charging that was assessed during the game was sufficient.

A few weeks after this incident, Milan received a one-game suspension for an illegal hit on Philadelphia Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo. He hit Rinaldo from behind during a battle for the puck along the boards although he was not seriously injured on the play.

A short time into the 2013-14 season, Milan scored his first-ever NHL overtime goal to break a 2-2 tie game at home against the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets.

Los Angeles Kings (2015-current)Edit

On June 26, 2015, Milan was traded to the Los Angeles Kings for Martin Jones, Colin Miller and the 13th overall pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

Career StatisticsEdit

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2004–05 Coquitlam Express BCHL 50 9 14 23 100
2004–05 Vancouver Giants WHL 1 0 0 0 2 2 0 0 0 0
2005–06 Vancouver Giants WHL 62 9 10 19 149 18 3 4 7 23
2006–07 Vancouver Giants WHL 70 30 38 68 147 22 7 12 19 26
2007–08 Boston Bruins NHL 77 8 19 27 89 7 2 0 2 4
2008–09 Boston Bruins NHL 72 17 25 42 136 10 3 6 9 43
2009–10 Boston Bruins NHL 50 9 11 20 44 13 5 4 9 19
2010–11 Boston Bruins NHL 79 30 32 62 121 25 5 7 12 63
2011–12 Boston Bruins NHL 81 26 35 61 135 7 0 3 3 8
2012–13 Boston Bruins NHL 46 7 20 27 75 22 7 12 19 14
NHL totals 405 97 142 239 600 84 22 32 54 151

International StatisticsEdit

Year Team Event   GP G A Pts PIM
2007 Canada SS 8 0 3 3 16
Junior int'l totals 8 0 3 3 16

Awards & AchievementsEdit

Major Junior HockeyEdit

  • President's Cup (Vancouver Giants) (2006)
  • Memorial Cup (Vancouver Giants) (2007)
  • Stafford Smythe Memorial Trophy (2007)
  • Memorial Cup All-Star Team (2007)

NHLEdit

  • NHL YoungStars Game (2008)
  • Stanley Cup champion (2011)

Boston BruinsEdit

  • Seventh Player Award (2008)
  • Eddie Shore Award (2009)

International PlayEdit

In the off-season following his MVP performance at the 2007 Memorial Cup, Milan was named team captain of Team Canada for the 2007 Super Series against Russia.

The series (an eight-game competition between Canada and Russia's under-20 teams) commemorated the 35th anniversary of the historic 1972 Summit Series. Milan recorded three assists as Team Canada won the series with seven wins and a tie.

Two years later, he was invited to Team Canada's summer orientation camp in Calgary, Alberta for the 2010 Winter Olympics, but he was not chosen to the final roster.

Personal LifeEdit

Milan was born in East Vancouver to parents Dobrivoje Lucic and Snezana Kesa. Dobrivoje (a longshoreman) immigrated from Serbia when he was 27 years old. Snezana arrived from Serbia with her family when she was 2 years old.

Milan has a younger brother named Nikola and an older brother named Jovan. His maternal uncle, Dan Kesa is a retired NHL right winger who played for the Vancouver Canucks, Pittsburgh Penguins, Tampa Bay Lightning and the Dallas Stars.

Growing up, he attended Killarney Secondary in Vancouver. Milan was a fan of the hometown Vancouver Canucks and has singled out power forward Todd Bertuzzi as one of his favourite players when following the team.

When he was 15 years old, Milan was diagnosed with Scheuermann's disease, a condition that can cause the upper back to curve. It has given him a hunched over posture.

In the summer of 2012, Milan married his longtime girlfriend Brittany Carnegie. They have a daughter named Valentina (born on January 17, 2013).